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Every once in a while, a new Buzzword floats to the surface that everyone uses. In 2013, that phrase was “Content is King.” Unlike a king or any feudal system, content does not have to be a complicated thing. More often than not, content that has simplest message or delivery does the best in the marketing world.
A great example of simplicity in the finest capacity is some of the Coca Cola sitelets. These sites just have little time wasters or something that could amuse you on your most boring of days. Guess what? All of these microsites are in the colors of the Coca-Cola logo and are riddled with subtle branding.
Coca Cola’s microsites are legitimately the most simple games and toys on the web, but garner thousands of views and visitors per day. Although not all companies have the capital to make dozens of microsites with amusing games or activities to do, the message that is delivered by these simple yet effective marketing tools is still relevant.
I’ve been seeing a ton of “Which X are you?” quizzes in my Facebook News Feed. Internet users flock to this type of “test” and hope to get the character that they identify most with as their result.
(I might feel bitter because I received the Grinch when I took the test about which Dr. Seuss character I was. Although the test gave me the best result I could’ve asked for, I still took the test a couple of times and suppressed the inner Grinch in myself hoping for a different result.)
The formula of answering multiple-choice questions and receiving a character is so simple, yet it yields amazing results. A simple “brought to you by” on these tests can be a successful marketing tactic and leave a positive feeling toward the brand.
Kit Kat would be great brand to sponsor these, “who are you?” quizzes. Something along the lines of “Gimme a Character, Gimme a break of that Kit-Kat bar!” would work perfectly on BuzzFeed.
Twix has been trying to advertise the difference between the right side and left side of its products, while encouraging users to try both and therefore, eat more Twix. A simple “Are you on the left side or right side?” poll could be a cheeky native ad placed on a political blog. Click the left side for Hillary, and the right side for Christie. Click the left if you think Obama is correct, click the right if you support Boehner.
I think that some of the worst types of content marketing are those where they are so forced that it’s obvious the spokesperson is just in a commercial to get some money. Having known quite a few Olympic athletes, I know for a fact that Subway was not a staple in their diet when training. In fact, it was just the opposite as they eat predominantly organic food that has little to no taste but is healthy.
The fact that well-known athletes have to say they eat somewhere when training instead of being seen there renders the endorsement worthless. If they were actually eating at the establishment, you better believe that there would be social media posts by people in the restaurant.
The worst thing you can do is try to force bad content that is unnatural on your audience. These past few weeks I’ve seen a ton of commercials featuring Olympic athletes endorsing hotels and other products. It’s obvious that it is forced and unnatural, the marketing teams at these companies are just trying to take advantage of these famous faces once every four years.
Marketers, keep it simple. Going back to basics will impact more people and lead to more conversions.